Small Farmers, Big Business, And the Battle over the "Prairie Sentinels." (Gazette).
Manitoba History 2003, Spring-Summer
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The most recent National Historic Site in Manitoba ranks among the largest in Canada's repertoire, if only in the number of board feet (BFM) of lumber involved. The Inglis Elevator Row contains at least 500,000 BFM. When the elevators were erected in the 1920s, Burrows Lumber Company, the main supplier in the Parkand region, was turning out 5,000,000-7,000,000 BFM annually, most of it destined for railway ties and grain storage structures. The Canadian Northern Railway (today part of Canadian National Railways) alone constructed 3200 km of branch lines across the province between 1897-1930. About 2000 grain elevators were built in the same period. It is not surprising that the completion of these portions of Manitoba's infrastructure coincided with the exhaustion of most of Manitoba's old growth forests. The Inglis Elevators were deemed a National Historic Site because nowhere else in Canada, North America or the world can one find another row of five traditional-style elevators. Over the last ten years, similar 20th century grain storage facilities have been demolished at an incredible rate. They have been replaced by even larger, cement and steel superstructures, which hold 100,000-300,000 bushels (2840-8540 tonnes) of prairie grain, as opposed to the 25,000-40,000 bushel (680-1088 tonnes) capacity of each of the grain elevators located at Inglis. Traditional-style elevators, albeit with more modern inner workings, were still being erected as late as the 1970s. What happened, then, to the grain industry in the past three decades to cause the explosion (or in this case, implosion!) in the number of elevator demolitions? To explain this, it is necessary to review the history of the grain trade in Western Canada, with the Inglis Elevators serving as a microcosm of the larger picture.
- 2,99 €
- Category: History
- Published: 22 March 2003
- Publisher: Manitoba Historical Society
- Print Length: 17 Pages
- Language: English